Bryce Mitchell wasn’t at his best going into UFC 282 this past weekend (Dec. 10, 2022) inside T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The event’s pay-per-view (PPV) main card opened with a pivotal match up at 145 pounds between two of the division’s brightest rising contenders. Indeed, somebody’s “O” had to go when Mitchell and Ilia Topuria fought in “Sin City” and, unfortunately for the proud Arkansan, it was his.
Mitchell was originally supposed to face Movsar Evloev in a Nov. 2022 main event until his opponent suffered an injury, leading “Thug Nasty” accepting the seemingly more difficult match up opposite Topuria. Dropping his first professional loss via second round arm-triangle choke submission (watch highlights), Mitchell revealed today (Mon., Dec. 12, 2022) that he wasn’t 100 percent.
“I just want to let y’all know I’m fine, I’m home and I want to thank y’all for the love and support,” Mitchell said in a Twitter video. “I definitely got to let you know that that really wasn’t me out there. I had the flu the week before, and I thought I’d just tough it out. I didn’t feel good at all in there. That wasn’t myself. I trained a lot harder and could’ve performed a lot better, but I went in there with stuff hurting, not up to 100 percent. Like I said, I had the flu.
“I wish I wouldn’t even took the fight, but I didn’t know it would mess me up that bad,” he concluded. “I thought I would be able to hang in there for all three rounds, because that’s what I trained for. I trained for my cardio to be there the whole time. It wasn’t even there one bit of the time. I’ll come back stronger, I just hate going out on that one like that. But I will be better, I’ll be alright.”
Directly before Mitchell's 15-fight win streak-snapping loss, he scored his biggest career win, dominating Edson Barboza en route to a unanimous decision. The 28-year-old was unable to find his typical grappling success against Topuria and he’ll surely look to sharpen his game ahead of his next time out.
For complete UFC 282 results and coverage click here.